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When everyone has a home

Housing advice for Northern Ireland

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You must pay rent to your landlord in return for living in the property. If you stop paying your rent, are late with a payment or do not pay in full, your landlord may begin eviction proceedings against you.

The amount of housing benefit that is paid to single people aged under 35 who rent privately is often restricted. There are some exemptions that apply.

You have to pay rent to your landlord, whether that’s the Housing Executive, a housing association or a private landlord. When you’re offered a property you should be told how much the rent is and how much your rates and service charges are. If you're not given this information, make sure you ask for it before agreeing to take on a property.

Your tenants are obliged to keep their rental accounts up to date. If a tenant is late with rent or hasn't paid in full, you should contact them to find out what has happened.

The bedroom tax is a reduction in Housing Benefit for people who live in a property that is owned by NIHE or a housing association and that is too large for their household. Its proper name is the “social sector size criteria”, but most people call it the “bedroom tax”.

The amount of housing benefit which your tenants get will not always match up to the amount of rent you charge. The Housing Executive looks at the size of the claimant's household, their personal circumstances and the area in which they live before deciding how much housing benefit they are entitled to.

If you rent your home from the Housing Executive or a housing association and you receive Housing Benefit, the amount of money you receive could be reduced if your home has too many bedrooms. Find out how many rooms your household is allowed.

Your Housing Benefit will be reduced if the Government says you have too many bedrooms. However, for the next few years, the money that you lose will be replaced from a separate fund. Politicians at the Assembly have set up a fund to offset these cuts to Housing Benefit, meaning that most people in Northern Ireland will not actually lose out financially because of the changes. This fund will be available until March 2020.

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